[R-G] Iraq Prisons Overflow
david.mcr at earthlink.net
Thu Aug 18 23:37:53 MDT 2005
An important story - am passing it along.
> [Original Message]
> From: cord macguire <cordymac at hotmail.com>
> To: <cordymac at hotmail.com>
> Date: 8/18/2005 10:15:35 AM
> Subject: Iraq Prisons Overflow
> 700 More Troops to Be Sent To Iraq to Bolster Prison Operations
> by Bradley Graham
> Washington Post
> August 18, 2005
> Responding to an appeal for more forces in Iraq to help manage a rising
> number of detainees, the Pentagon is dispatching an additional 700 troops
> from the 82nd Airborne Division, defense officials said yesterday.
> The previously unscheduled deployment is intended specifically to bolster
> prison operations, the officials said. It is not part of a temporary
> increase in U.S. troop levels in Iraq that commanders have said is likely
> enhance security for a planned constitutional referendum in October and
> governmental elections in December.
> "The basic fact driving this deployment is the steady rise in the prison
> population," said Lt. Col. Barry Venable, a Pentagon spokesman. "There
> to be some additional resources devoted to this."
> The number of prisoners held in U.S. military detention centers in Iraq
> more than doubled since the autumn, climbing from 5,400 in September to
> than 10,800 now, according to the latest Pentagon figures. The surge has
> filled existing prisons to capacity and prompted commanders to embark on
> unanticipated prison expansion plan.
> Military officials have attributed the influx of detainees to intensified
> counterinsurgency operations by Iraqi as well as U.S. forces. But the
> burgeoning prison population also appears to reflect the persistence of
> insurgency itself.
> A formal request for more security forces came in May, officials said,
> approval was granted last month. An announcement by the 82nd Airborne
> Division's headquarters at Fort Bragg, N.C., on Monday saying that the
> battalion, 504th Parachute Infantry Regiment, will be going to Iraq
> contained no information about the unit's mission.
> Pentagon officials said the unit will not necessarily provide prison
> but rather engage in a number of detention-related operations, such as
> securing the area around a prison compound or transporting detainees from
> one prison to another.
> "They're going to assist however they're needed," Venable said. "But it's
> best to think of them as a security force, not as prison guards, although
> some things they might do could bring them into proximity with prisoners."
> Crowded conditions at the U.S.-run prison camps and what commanders
> as an increasingly hard-core inmate population have produced a
> mix, confronting U.S. forces with a growing risk of prison violence. Camp
> Bucca, a sprawling detention facility in the southern Iraqi desert near
> Kuwaiti border where the majority of prisoners are held, experienced two
> large riots earlier this year.
> The danger of outside attack also remains a concern. Last spring, U.S.
> forces repelled a significant assault by insurgents on Abu Ghraib prison,
> the U.S. military's primary interrogation center and the site of highly
> publicized cases of detainee abuse.
> The U.S. military runs three main detention centers in Iraq: Camp Bucca
> the south and Abu Ghraib and Camp Cropper in the Baghdad area. But
> anticipating a continued influx of detainees, a fourth prison, called
> Suse, is being built on the site of a Russian-built former Iraqi military
> barracks near the northern city of Sulaymaniyah.
> Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld, during a visit to Iraq last month,
> expressed interest in handing responsibility for detainees to Iraqi
> authorities "as soon as is feasible." But no date has been set for such a
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